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Best Upright Vacuum

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Bets Upright Vacuums 2017

UPDATED OCTOBER 2018 - We’ve been updating our list of Best Upright Vacuums every year since 2008 and the latest list for 2018 has just been released.

Our choice for the Best Upright Vacuum in 2018 is the Shark Rotator NV752 TruePet. This was also last year’s top upright and it continues to be a strong consumer favorite.  Number two in our list is the Dyson Ball Animal 2 which is a beast of a vacuum and subsequently our best vacuum for pet hair.  In third position is the Shark APEX DuoClean – a new Shark machine that is similar to the Shark Rotator NV752, but is has two brushrolls in the cleaner head.

Following is our table of the top 10 uprights on the market today.  Prices for these vacuums range from about $90 to $500.

Best Upright Vacuum Cleaners 2018

 Rank  Vacuum Cleaner  Approx. Price (USD)
 1  Shark Rotator NV752 TruePet  250 - 350
 2  Dyson Ball Animal 2  450 - 500
 3  Shark APEX   400 - 500
 4  Shark NV801/NV803  300 - 350
 5  Oreck U2000R-1  175 - 200
 6  Shark Rotator NV501  150 - 200
 7  Oreck 2100RHS  150 - 175
 8  Shark Deluxe NV360  100 - 200
 9  Bissell CleanView 1330   90 - 100
 10  Hoover UH30010COM Platinum  200 - 250

ALL of these vacuums are good but we would urge you to read the reviews carefully before making a purchase because some may excel in one area and not another.  Consider your cleaning needs carefully and make an informed decision based on the vacuum features, specifications, price, warranty, etc. 


#1) Shark Rotator NV752 TruePet

Why is the Shark Rotator NV752 our top choice?

Consumers Love It: Consistently rated over 90% by most owners and elicits comments such as “highly recommended” & “one of the best vacuums on the market”.

Multiple Cleaning Modes: Operates as an upright vacuum, a canister vacuum, and a handheld.

Includes Many Tools: Provided are a dusting brush, dusting genie, pet upholstery tool, hard floor genie, TruePet motorized brush, and an accessories bag.

No Consumables: This vacuum is bagless, has washable filters and also a belt that lasts the lifetime of the vacuum.

Sealed System & HEPA Filtration: HEPA level filtration and a sealed system are very helpful for those suffering from asthma or allergies.

Powerful Suction: Consumers agree that this machine has exceptional suction.

Cleans Bare Floors & Carpet: Three settings provide the ability to clean bare floor, low pile carpet and high pile carpet.

Effective on Pet Hair: Includes a TruePet Motorized Brush and a Pet Upholstery Tool. Performs very well on pet hair when cleaning both hard surfaces and carpet.

Power Cord Length: The power cord is a full 30 feet in length.

Headlights: LED headlights in the nozzle as well as on the vacuum handle.  Lights last the lifetime of the vacuum.

Warranty: The NV752 carries a very lengthy 7-year warranty.

Price: If you dig aroound this machine can generally be found online for under $300.

The NV752 is a bagless upright with a motor driven brushbar for deep cleaning of carpets.  It is of average weight (15.6 lbs) and despite its powerful suction is not too loud.  The suction can also be reduced via suction vents on the side of the vacuum handle.  It is fairly maneuverable due to the swivel steering and the low profile nozzle helps it get under low furniture.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Shark Rotator NV752 review... 


#2) Dyson Ball Animal 2

This is a very powerful vacuum cleaner and it is also our top pick for the best pet hair vacuum.  This is an excellent machine for households with pets and for owners with allergies.

Powerful Vacuum: According to Dyson this unit puts out 270 Air Watts of suction which is more than most of their vacuums.

Top Notch Ratings: Owners are giving this machine very high ratings and we have given this unit a score of 94/100

Long Cleaning Reach: Has a 35 foot power cord and a cleaning reach of close to 50 feet.

Certified Asthma & Allergy Friendly: Has whole machine HEPA filtration and is certified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

Respectable Warranty: Has a 5-year parts and labor warranty.

Motorized Brushroll: Cleaner head has a very powerful motorized brushroll for deep cleaning carpet.

Designed for Carpet & Bare Floors: Tests show good cleaning ability on both carpet and bare floors.

Tools: Includes a host of tools some of which are specially designed for the removal of pet hair.

Tools "Click" Into Place: Tools are not friction fit but rather click into place and will not fall off.

Large Dust Canister: The dust canister has a capacity of 0.55 gallons and is very easy to empty.

This is a bagless upright vacuum with Ball Technology which makes it easy to move and turn.  The filters are also rinsable which helps reduce consumables and costs.  Ours came with the tangle-free turbine tool which is rather innovative and really does pull up hair/string/thread/etc without any tangling.  The vacuum is a bit on the heavy side however and it is not easy to push on deep pile carpet. 

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Dyson Ball Animal 2 review...


#3) Shark APEX

The APEX is new to our best upright vacuums list as it is only about a year old.  But it made an impact as soon as we got it (we have model AX952).  When we ran this unit though its paces it performed very well indeed.  We also found that owner reviews and ratings are very good.
 
DuoClean Technology
This technology utilizes 2 brushrolls in the cleaner head.  The front brushroll is soft and it is designed to “buff” bare floors and to also pull in larger debris.
 
HEPA filtration and Sealed System
The APEX has a rinsable HEPA filter that is easy to access and clean.  It also has a “Sealed System” which ensures all the incoming air is forced through the filters before being released back into the house/room.
 
Lift-Away canister
This feature has become a staple on many Shark vacuums and that's because it is very handy and it works. The ability to lift up the dust-canister/motor assembly and carry it while working with the hose/wand/tools (with the other hand) adds tremendous cleaning mobility to an upright vacuum.
 
30 ft power cord
The power cord is a respectable length and it doesn’t have you constantly searching for the next power outlet.
 
Lengthy 7-year warranty
7-years is longer than average for most uprights in this price range.
 
Motorized Pet Tool
This tool stores on-board the vacuum and it has a motorized brushroll.  It is very good at pulling up pet hair (on carpet or upholstery for example) and is even handy for doing a set of stairs.
 
Powerful suction
Our tests show the APEX is capable at pulling up all manner of debris.  Most owners praise the unit for its strong suction.
 
Capable on carpet and bare floors
Despite brushrolls that are always spinning, the vacuum is capable on bare flooring (aided by the DuoClean Technology).  It also has an aggressive main brushroll that does a great job on carpet.
 
LED headlights
These are a nice touch when vacuuming in dimly lit areas or corners
 
Quiet operation
The APEX is one of the quietest uprights we have tested.  There is no annoying or high pitched sound when you vacuum.
 
When the APEX arrived on the scene Shark touted it as their most advanced upright vacuum and it shows.  It has pretty much every feature crammed into one machine.  This is great but it does make the vacuum tip the scales at about 16 lbs.  We definitely like that the APEX is powerful yet quiet.  And the DuoClean Technology is great at pulling up larger debris and eliminating stuck-on dust from bare surfaces.  Surprisingly this technology is also effective when cleaning carpet.
 

#4) Shark Rotator NV801/NV803

The Shark rotator lift Away Speed with Duoclean is more compact and lightweight than the Shark NV752 (our #1 above), AND it has 2 brushrolls. We were initially surprised by the dual brushroll approach, however after running the vacuum through its paces and testing its performance on carpet, tile flooring, and on pet hair, we were sold. 

Far from being a gimmick, the dual brushrolls (which Shark refers to as DuoClean Technology) really do help the vacuum pick up more dust and debris – especially on bare floors.  The front brushroll is soft and it grabs debris both large and small feeding it to the main brushroll in the center of the nozzle.  We found that this approach really helps when dealing with large debris that may get pushed around by another vacuum.  Also, on bare floors the soft brushroll kind of “polishes” away dust on the flooring and extends cleaning to the very tip of the nozzle head.

This vacuum also has a sealed system, HEPA filtration, an LED headlight, easy to remove brushrolls, and a lengthy 7-year warranty.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Shark Rotator NV801 review...


Looking for the best vacuum cleaner? Try our NEW easy-to-use Vacuum Cleaner Finder tool and see a comprehensive list of vacuum cleaner ratings for all brands. Find the best bagless vacuum, the best cordless, the best Shark or Dyson. Sort by consumer ratings or filter by price. Vacuum Cleaner Finder does it all.


#5) Oreck U2000R-1

It is important to understand just what you are getting if you purchase this upright vacuum.  It is very much a no-frills machine and it doesn’t have a hose or any attachments, but it cleans large areas of carpet and bare floors very well.  The U2000R-1 is a commercial vacuum but it is also quite popular with home owners who use it for residential cleaning.

The vacuum may have no tools or attachments but it has powerful suction and is lightweight at under 10 lbs.  It also sports a very lengthy 40 foot power cord.  The Oreck U2000R-1 is good bang for your buck and it is fairly affordable.  It is a little on the loud side however.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Oreck U20000R-1 review...


#6) Shark Navigator Lift-Away Rotator NV501

Like the other Shark vacuums in the list this one gets high consumer ratings and we frequently see ratings of 4.5 stars or more out of 5.  The NV501 is a 3-in-1 vacuum and operates as an upright vacuum, a canister vacuum, and to some extent a handheld.  It is bagless and the filters can be washed.  It also has a long power cord, headlights, brushbar controls and is known to be good on pet hair.

In addition, the Rotator has HEPA level filtration which is helpful for those suffering from asthma or allergies.  The vacuum also has strong suction and still manages not to be too loud.  It weighs in at 15.5 lbs which is neither light nor heavy - it is about average for an upright.  The few drawbacks of the machine include no nozzle height adjustment and a hose that is a bit short.

The Shark Navigator Lift-Away Rotator carries a 5-year warranty and can often be found online for under $200.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Shark NV501 review...


#7) Oreck 2100RHS

The Oreck 2100RHS is a very reasonably priced, no nonsense, bagged vacuum.  It is dubbed a commercial vacuum but many people love it for residential use.

It is important to point out that this is a no-frills machine.  It does not include attachments or tools nor does it come with much in the way of features.  When you buy this machine you get the vacuum, a manual, your warranty card and a vacuum bag.  That's it. 

Consumer ratings are excellent however and the vacuum is extremely lightweight (8.2 lbs), easy to maneuver, and it comes with a very long industrial power cord (35 feet).  It also has powerful suction. 

Note: Before buying a no-frills Oreck machine make sure that "no-frills" is what you want.  If you want tools, hose, attachments, features, etc. it may not be the right choice.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Oreck 2100RHS review...


#8) Shark Navigator Deluxe NV360

This vacuum provides good bang for your buck.  It is very reasonably priced and owner ratings and reviews are still very good.  It has strong suction, the popular Shark lift-away feature, a non-motorized pet hair tool and brushroll on/off controls.  The brushroll controls help this unit perform on smooth flooring and carpet.  We also like that it has a HEPA filter and all of the vacuum’s filters can be rinsed in water and re-used.  The NV360 works well on pet hair and is also not too loud.
 
The hose is a bit short however and the unit can easily be pulled over.  In addition, it is best for cleaning low/medium pile carpet and it can be difficult to move on deeper pile carpet.
 
The Shark NV360 weighs in the neighborhood of 16 lbs and it carries a respectable 5-year warranty. It can sometimes be found online for under $150 USD.
 

#9) Bissell Cleanview 1330

The Bissell 1330 is a simple bagless vacuum cleaner that has been getting good reviews and ratings from consumers.  It is very similar to the Bissell Cleanview 9595A but it has a new brushroll that has been redesigned for better pickup.  This is a motorized brushroll but it cannot be turned off.  

The vacuum is very reasonably priced and can usually be found for under $100.  It is also capable on pet hair, carpet and hard floors and it has good suction.  It includes several cleaning tools:
- dusting brush
- crevice tool
- turbo brush

The 1330 does not have a HEPA filter.  Vacuum weight is average for an upright at 15.5 lbs and it carries a 2-year limited warranty.

Check out pricing & reviews on Amazon.
Read the full Bissell 1330 review...


#10) Hoover UH30010COM

Still holding a place in our group of Best Upright Vacuums (for the past 8 years), the Hoover UH30010COM comes in at tenth place.  What makes this such a good upright? Everywhere on the net where quality consumer reviews can be found this particular vacuum ranks high (Amazon, Walmart, Epinions, Abt Electronics, Sears, etc.).  It typically sells for just over 200USD.  Not the cheapest machine out there but for the performance and features it is very reasonable and less costly than, for example, a Dyson or Miele. 

It also comes with a detachable canister that has its own carrying strap, a lifetime LED headlight, a 35 foot power cord, a HEPA filter, and it carries a 5-year warranty.  Weighing a paltry 12 pounds it is easy to move, lift and maneuver. One thing to note however is that the brushbar on the vacuum does not have an on/off switch so the machine is tailored more towards carpet cleaning, although it will work to some extent on bare floors as well. 

Check out pricing and reviews on Amazon.
Read the Hoover UH30010COM Platinum review...


Frequently Asked Questions

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Comments  

0 # Naomi 2018-09-26 16:14
Hello,

I am attempting to narrow my choices between the nv752 and the nv801/803. I have both laminate and carpeted floors. I am having trouble finding info re: how to clean the brush roll on the 752, whereas the 801/803 seems very easy. Is that ease of cleaning the brush roll worth choosing the 801/803 over the 752?

Thank you!
Naomi
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0 # Nigel 2018-09-26 18:52
Hi Naomi,

Cleaning the brushroll on the NV752 is not as easy as cleaning the brushroll on the NV801 (although it is still not that difficult). You do have to tip the vacuum to access the brushroll and clean it by pulling out hair/etc and you may have to take a pair of scissors to it. Also, the NV752 is a larger machine than the nv801 and the nv801 has DuoClean Technology (a second soft brushroll on the front) while the NV752 does not. In my opinion, the ease of cleaning the brushroll between these two units is not necessarily a sufficient reason to choose one over the other. However the other differences such as size and DuoClean technology, etc, may be better things to focus on.

-Nigel
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0 # Guy 2017-01-15 10:23
Thanks for finally talking about >Best Upright Vacuum
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0 # Helene Chirinian 2014-12-10 00:49
Hi, I am five feet tall and need a lightweight vacuum but also need the best one possible to clean thick pile Persian rugs. Help!
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0 # Mike 2014-11-18 01:00
Nigel you should try the Riccar radiance pro a bit pricy at $1500 but it does a good job, and has lots of bells and whistles. I compared it against a Miele cat & dog and it actually cleaned better. I would love it if you tested this made in the US machine.
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0 # Nigel Russco 2014-11-20 00:10
Thanks for the comment. We would also like to review a Riccar Radiance but vacuums like this are too expensive to buy for the purposes of a review and we have contacted Riccar in the past for a loaner (for review purposes) and received no response. We often find that the more expensive manufacturers like Miele, Sebo, etc are really tough nuts to crack when it comes to getting machines for reviews. We will continue trying with Riccar however!
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0 # Neal Bracken 2014-07-26 02:30
Nigel,

How are you today?

I am looking for an upright bagged vacuum cleaner that is less than 15 lbs, quiet,relatively inexpensive (under $400)and effectively picks up cat hair. Currently, I use a Kenmore Progressive upright which cleans effectively,but is too bloody heavy and loud. What would you recommend?

Thank you for your help.

Neal Bracken
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About Me

Hello!

I'm Nigel Russco, a 50 year old professional engineer originally from the west coast of Canada.  I love to review vacuums and I’ve been doing just that since 2008.  

I make every effort to write unbiased, intelligent vacuum cleaner reviews and I provide average consumer ratings for each and every vacuum cleaner I investigate.  My ultimate goal is to ensure you find the best vacuum for your cleaning needs.  

I also like to help when I can so feel free to send comments.


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